Dear SurvivalBlog Readers:
To date, I have written a few letters to the editor, and several articles. I can’t speak for all authors but I can share my experience, and more important why I do it. Now, I can tell you that it isn’t easy. It’s not just about writing the article itself. The hardest part is dealing with people. If you write an article that has anything to do with money or product choice and you are almost certain to have some very interesting comments. You have to deal with a few people that think because they chose something different, you are wrong, don’t know what you are talking about, or just somewhere near stupid.
I’ve seen authors accused of just putting words together to win the prize. If it is expensive, you are wasting money and your article is somehow useless. Honestly I could go on and on. Often hostile feedback is by aliases that have never posted an article. It’s not always that way, but you do have to be prepared for it.
There are people that will think this is an attempt to manipulate the decision process. So to you, know that I am posting under a completely different alias from anything I’ve written before.
Unfortunately people will say things on the internet that they would never say face to face. So, why do I put up with it? Why knowingly put my neck on the chopping block? You can say its about the prize but I will say that the subject matter I write about almost never wins. In fact, I’ve only seen one article on the topics I write about win, and it was really an excellent one that was far beyond my skill. That person went on to publish books on the subject. So I’m not surprised, because I don’t think my articles rise to that level. So, again, why write?
Because it’s part of my preps. You see, having a skill, logistics or a plan isn’t enough. A plan means nothing if you can’t articulate it, separate the superfluous from the critical, and express it in terms understandable to the audience. You can’t teach a skill, or outline a plan, by saying “because I said so.” No one is going to listen to you if you can’t talk to them. Some concepts and skills in the prepper community are simple, but many are very complex. If you are dealing with people that have no background in a subject, you, not them, need to adapt to that audiences baseline. Writing here also helps to deal with people with equal and greater skills; working through different opinions, and working out was to improve and compromise instead of argue.
Writing articles here allows me to develop the communications skills necessary for survival. Learning and improving “listening” skills, along with improving how to deal with confusion or down right angry people in a way that is productive, improves my odds of survival. This forum, helps me to break down, my thoughts into something presentable, and teachable. It helps me to explain to people want to learn, people that won’t listen, and often, I see responses that cause me to re-think something, or even change my mind on it.
So, consider it a challenge. Can you express a skillset, idea, or concept? I can tell you that it takes practice. Even deciding how to build an article conceptually, organize from simple to complex in a way that has each paragraph build on the previous, attempting to predict questions and address them ahead of time. But if you don’t practice you will never develop that skillset. – G.T.